I Eat Sardines

Packed like sardines into shiny metal boxes


I don’t even remember why, but one day, I bought some sardines. I must’ve been reading an article about sardines and happened to be ravenous at the time. The combination of hunger and what I imagined sardines to taste like churned away in my brain, until the day I found myself in the sardine aisle, facing down several choices:


With oil or without?

Oh, both, definitely. Because the oily ones, tho most assuredly better-tasting than the watery ones, were way fattening. I figured if I’m going to start on a lifelong mission of eating sardines, I’d better get used to the watery ones.

This article I read? About sardines? Was full of helpful information about how everyone should be eating sardines eight times a day. They’re packed to the gills (heh) with such nutritionals as omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorous, potassium, zinc, copper, and manganese. They are also apparently “a great source of nonmeat vitamin B12.”

AND they have some kind of other stuff that’s good for your BRAIN.

What’s not to love about the humble yet helpful sardine?

(Hint: they may taste like a butt.)

ANYway, after I bought my sardines, the next phase was to let the boxes sit, unopened, in my cabinet for about a year. Sardines are best when aged. Or . . . I made that up. Either way, there’s no expiration date, so there’s yet another benefit: sardines make great bomb-shelter food.

But I got bored waiting for a bomb scare, so one day I just opened the damn boxes.



OK. Not so exciting.

But now LOOK!


EWWWWWwwwwwwwww!!! Right?

The oily ones are at the left; the watery—and worryingly pinker ones—are on the right.

The smell was overpowering. Imagine cat food, tuna, chum, and seafood juice all mixed together with month-old fish heads. Humans tend to back away from this type of stench. Cats, on the other hand:


I cannot begin to describe to you the speed with which Gus was up on that counter with his face planted in that tin. It was a blur. No sniffing, no finicky eyeballing the product. Just up, over, and out with the tongue.

So we know cats like sardines. What about JD? I had done some research on various ways to enjoy this smelly treat. Serve over rice with hot sauce. Mix with mustard and/or mayonnaise. One source recommended making them into tuna salad, so as to be “less aware of their animal-ness.”

“Animal-ness.” Now that’s what was bugging me about these sardines. They’re very animal-y, even tho they are in fact fish. It’s like eating gamey meat. You like the flavor of meat; you just don’t want it to taste too meaty, too animal-y. And so it was with sardines. I love fish. But I don’t love fishy. And from the smell of things, these sardines were FISH-AY.

So what did I do?

Click below to find out:




So, what do you think?

  • Are you now tempted to try some sardines?
  • Could your brain use some essential fishy oils?
  • Can you stand the smell?
  • Are you into “animal-ness”?
  • Oily or watery?
  • Most important: Do you have cats? You’re gonna need them.


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83 Responses to “I Eat Sardines”

  1. 1 dcr

    I just eat them straight out of the tin. Crack that thing open, peel back, grab a fork and chow down!

    If yours smell fishy or like chum, maybe you got yourself some bad sardines.

    Try some in Louisiana Hot Sauce!

    Not sure if I’ve ever tried them just in water. I do not like them in mustard.
    .-= dcr´s last blog ..Going Green with Purple Passion Wednesday =-.

  2. 2 Tracy

    Ha! I will have to send you a bag of tiny dried anchovies head and all and see if you can eat them.

    It’s funny how growing up with a Korean mom greatly expands your idea of what is edible.
    .-= Tracy´s last blog ..I have ONE Google Wave invite nomination left =-.

  3. 3 Condo Blues

    I eat sardines on crackers. Yum! Then again, I like to eat haggis too.

    I eat haggis so JD doesn’t have too!! :)
    .-= Condo Blues ´s last blog ..What Are Your Favorite Homemade Gifts for Men and Boys? =-.

  4. 4 Kathy

    Wow, I was all ready to hate on those sardines, especially the non-oily ones (help your brain?? They look like brain!). But then you went and tasted them and you didn’t think they were gross! So now my mouth is watering all because you liked them. And Gus and Pru did too, so that’s all kinds of thumbs and paws up. I’m sold!
    .-= Kathy´s last blog ..Objectum Sexuality =-.

  5. 5 Jaffer

    Well, no – I buy a whole fish from the china-man at the farmer’s market – ‘sweet’ stuff I tell ya !

    We buy tuna sometimes – I just bought three cans the other day – with oil.

    But sardines – I’ve only bought twice – ever !

    No we couldn’t eat out of the can and so we decided to make it Indian-style by frying an onion, add curry powder, ground cumin, ground coriander seeds, ground turmeric, chilies, tomatoes, the sardines, cook for 5 more minutes and serve between bread or over plain rice.

    Nice video.

  6. 6 Grace

    I love sardines, been eating them since I was a kid. I like to make a sandwich on rye toast with lettuce. Yummy! I also eat anchovies. You looked great in the video. BTW I answered your question about why I shaved all my hair off on my blog today (with a link back to you). It’s was a very simple reason really.
    .-= Grace´s last blog ..My hate-affair with hair =-.

  7. 7 Nicole

    like your video (and your cats–so cute!), but I can’t say I had your same reaction the first time I tried sadines.
    My mom insists on putting sardines in salad. Nothing like taking a big bite of yummy salad and getting a mouthful of salty fishy mush.

  8. 8 Anne

    i used to eat sardines when I was pregnant. They are loaded with calcium. Milk makes me gag and there is only so much ice cream you are allowed to eat. I never thought of making sardine salad (like tuna). I used to eat them like smoked trout. Too bad you liked them. If you hadn’t, the cats would have scored.
    .-= Anne´s last blog ..A Letter to Parents =-.

  9. 9 Barb - WillThink4Wine

    Ack! I buy a can for my Dad’s Christmas Stocking every year, if that counts. He eats them all the time.
    .-= Barb – WillThink4Wine´s last blog ..Hairdate 2002 – or “A very SisterDear Christmas” =-.

  10. 10 feefifoto

    Oh JD, I would have stopped the moment I saw that the cans open with pop tabs instead of those cool keys they used to have. If I’m going to contemplate eating something disgusting it darn well better have some fun attached.
    .-= feefifoto´s last blog ..Facebook Is My Hero: Using Social Media To Keep In Touch With My Tween =-.

  11. 11 Jeff

    I’ve never tried them, but after seeing this I wouldn’t be ascared to either. I think the big test is anchovies. From what I’ve heard, they taste like eyebrows.
    .-= Jeff´s last blog ..I must be the luckiest guy on the planet =-.

  12. 12 CatLadyLarew

    Since the CatLady has not cats, she has no use for sardines. I’ll stick with plain old albacore tuna, thank you very much! (Which explains why my brain doesn’t function quite properly.)

    Thanks again for trying something so I don’t have to. I rely on you, JD!
    .-= CatLadyLarew´s last blog ..Climate Change for Dummies =-.

  13. 13 Patricia

    My grandfather used to eat sardines. I can still remember the smell. I wouldn’t even want them in my kitchen shelves.

  14. 14 Daisy the Curly Cat

    I would like a bite, please!

    I am not sure that your “I’m fine” after taking a bite is a ringing endorsement of their deliciousness. Maybe they would taste better in aspic.
    .-= Daisy the Curly Cat´s last blog ..I am off the drugs! =-.

  15. 15 Spot

    My mom used to feed us sardines when we were kids. They used to come in mustard sauce! And I loved them. The cans back then had these little key things and you had to insert the metal part into the key and roll the lid off. It was alot of work.

    I don’t eat them anymore…because they don’t take the bones out and sometimes you can see the backbone or whatever and it crunches and I want to vomit!

    .-= Spot´s last blog ..I’m thinking of moving…like to another galaxy… =-.

  16. 16 JD

    dcr: Ew. I hope they weren’t bad. They didn’t taste bad or “off.” And neither I nor Gus has gotten sick. Mmmm. I love almost ANYthing in Louisiana hot sauce! I didn’t try the mustard. I was too scared.

    Tracy: Yeah, you’ve definitely had more interesting childhood eating experiences than I have. Mine are pretty much limited to succotash, Mexicorn, and the dreaded porcupine meatball.

    Condo Blues: Thank you for eating haggis so I don’t have to! That is definitely one thing I’ll never try, especially after seeing a picture of it on Kathy’s post.

    Kathy: I recommend them. Especially on a cracker with butter. I haven’t tried them with rice yet, but I bet they’d be good that way. And you do get over the smell . . . after a while.

    Jaffer: Your recipe sounds delicious. Especially over rice. So you don’t buy canned sardines? Only fresh? I bet it’s a whole ‘nother fish.

    Grace: I would totally eat that! Except maybe on whole wheat or sourdough bread, as I am not so much a fan of the rye. I’m on my way to read about your hair (or lack of)!

    Nicole: I don’t think I’d like ‘em in a salad. Too much difference in texture and flavor. I like a nice chille shrimp in my salad, but nothing oily and slimy like a sardine.

    Anne: Do you still eat them? Or was that only a pregnancy thing? It’s too bad I liked them ALSO because the video might’ve been more entertaining. As it was, it was just some lady eating sardines, while cats interfered.

    Barb – WillThink4Wine: It counts! Yay for your dad. I bet he has a pretty powerful brain.

    feefifoto: I, too, was disappointed to find no keys. BO-RING. But it was better than having to use a can opener.

    Jeff: I really don’t think anyone s/b ascared to try sardines. They’re pretty harmless. As for anchovies, with THAT description? No thanks. I get quite enough eyebrows in my diet already, thank you.

    CatLadyLarew: You’re welcome! Tuna is good for you too. But sardines seem to have EVERYthing. Regardless, I’ll probably be sticking with tuna, as well. It’s what I was raised on.

    Patricia: HA! I kept mine wrapped in tinfoil in the fridge for a couple of days then threw them out. They didn’t smell, but I kept imagining they did.

    Daisy the Curly Cat: I saved you some! Whoops! Pru just swooped in and grabbed it. Sorry. “I’m fine” seemed like an appropriate thing to say, as I was worried I might throw up. Oh, you cats just LOVE your aspic, don’t you?

    Spot: I wish these tins had that key opener thing. Not sure about the mustard. And I didn’t see any bones, but I didn’t poke around too much. I know you’re not supposed to really taste them, but I surely do not need to see them.

  17. 17 Jen @ lifelove'n'wine

    I remember my dad used to eat sardines on saltines. They were whole little fish and they still had eyes I think! I was so grossed out when I was little. I think I remember not thinking they were too bad once he had me taste them.

    Or were they anchovies?

    .-= Jen @ lifelove’n'wine´s last blog ..Beautiful Girls =-.

  18. 18 Karen & Gerard Zemek

    I remember my mom fixing sardine sandwiches with mustard for me when I was a kid. I liked them! We didn’t save ours for a year though before eating them. I don’t think I’d want to eat old ones like that.
    .-= Karen & Gerard Zemek´s last blog ..A Letter To Mom Because I Can’t Write Poems (Writer’s Workshop) =-.

  19. 19 Bingo

    I`m glad you enjoyed them. I think I will never eat them.

  20. 20 Buggys

    Were you drugged up before you ate those nasty fish-ay things? That I could understand. That fishy mess in those cans was not very appetizing.
    Ok, sorry, I’m sounding like a child but…..yucky! Thanks for doing that for us!
    .-= Buggys´s last blog ..Police, Addicts & Doughnuts =-.

  21. 21 Lidian

    I do not like a wet sardine,
    I do not like its silver sheen
    And I won’t eat it on a plate
    Not even if my meal is late
    And there is nothing in the larder
    Except a lousy old tomarter;
    I do not like them, dear JD,
    And will not eat them in a tree
    Or on a plane, though in that place
    Sardines would win me extra space;
    But we have cats that do not fuss
    And would agree with your dear Gus
    That tinned sardines are mighty fine
    And eat them right down to the spine.
    .-= Lidian´s last blog ..Arnold Makes the Grade =-.

  22. 22 Puglette

    oh yum!! i used to sit at the kitchen table with my dad and eat sardines on saltines. sometimes we had them on fresh san francisco sourdough bread. yummm!!! i was not a huge fan of the tails, i would remove those.

    and what about pickled herring? have you tried that? it’s delish! sometimes i buy a small jar and stand in the kitchen by myself to eat them.

    hubby does not like either of these tasty fishes. he did not have a good scandanavian upbringing.
    .-= Puglette´s last blog ..Cupcakes =-.

  23. 23 dcr

    I did not know there was a video. I just noticed that. I thought you were just drawing attention to the fact you ate sardines so we don’t have to by putting it in a big font. ;)

    I think I have a can of anchovies somewhere. Must be 5-10 years old by now. Maybe I should do a blog post…
    .-= dcr´s last blog ..Going Green with Purple Passion Wednesday =-.

  24. 24 dcr

    BTW, do I get a prize for having the first comment? LOL!

    At least I didn’t post “FIRST!” like I’ve seen on some sites. Go to a newspaper and see if the first comment on an article is ever “First!” Then print it out and frame it, because that would be awesome. ;)
    .-= dcr´s last blog ..Going Green with Purple Passion Wednesday =-.

  25. 25 Regan

    I have a cat who will pretty much eat anything. And will pretty much do anything to get what she wants.

    I’m not sure I ever want to try sardines… or have anything to do with them.

  26. 26 kathryn

    Not only did you EAT the offending, year-old sardines, but you did it front of a kazillion people!

    What would you have done had you felt the need to vomit? I’d like to think Dave wud’ve kept rolling, but had the decency to hold back your hair.

    Doesn’t tuna have the same benefits as sardines, then? I have to say, they looked gross. Tuna in a can does NOT look gross.

    I don’t know…maybe if you mix the two together?

    You’re my hero, once again, JD!!!
    .-= kathryn´s last blog ..Right Hook =-.

  27. 27 Lola

    When I was a kid we always got the Sardines in Mustard. OMG! They are just heaven, in a sandwich. Just white bread and the mustardy sardines. I’m wishing I had some right now because I have nothing in the house for lunch.

    Awhile back I was at Meijer and I saw these larger cans of Sardines in Tomato Sauce and they were really cheap. So the bargain hunter in me had to buy one to try it. I looked up on the internet how to serve them. I served them over pasta. My kids are still talking about them. They loved them! And it was a really cheap way to spruce up pasta. Just pour the can in a microwave safe dish, nuke it till warm, then pour over pasta. There is so much tomato sauce you don’t need to add any spaghetti sauce.
    .-= Lola´s last blog ..National Grouch Day =-.

  28. 28 dcr

    Wow. It’s like Sardinapalooza in here. Tomato sauced sardines over spaghetti sounds interesting.

    Maybe we can start a SardineFest, but that would only lead to stuff like Sardine Ice Cream, so maybe not…
    .-= dcr´s last blog ..A Long Time Ago, In the Refrigerated Section… =-.

  29. 29 jennyonthespot

    YOU ATE THEM???????!!!!!!!!!!!!

    .-= jennyonthespot´s last blog ..My Butt Hurts, You Don’t Even Know. =-.

  30. 30 ann

    I’ve never tried a sardine but now I don’t have to even though you thought they were good :) I was actually expecting a totally different outcome on the video there. Maybe one of these days I’ll break down and give them a try, MAYBE.
    .-= ann´s last blog ..Note worthy =-.

  31. 31 JD

    Jen @ lifelove’n'wine: I don’t think I could eat anything that still has its eyeballs. I was relieved to see that these were just unidentifiable chunks. Slimy chunks, but at least no eyeballs.

    Ken & Gerard Zemek: Well, there was no expiration date. And maybe it wasn’t quite a whole year. I don’t know about the mustard. Or the sandwich, for that matter. Now I can get behind them on a buttered cracker.

    Bingo: HA! That’s fine. You don’t have to now!

    Buggys: I deliberately did NOT take any drugs before filming that video so I could give a clear and unadulterated report. I swear. (Of course, I had to swallow a handful of pills afterward, but that’s another post.)

    Lidian: Oh, mah GAWD! That is hilarious! You win! I don’t know what, but whatever IT is? You win it. That’s awesome. You even managed to work in Gus (he is so pleased) and rhyme “tomato” with “larder.” HA! Well done. Well done, indeed.

    Puglette: Hmmm. I could eat sardines on a nice sourdough, I think. Pickled herring? Ehh . . . My mom-in-law eats this at X-mas, and I have to say, it looks rather foul. But maybe I’ll make that my next food challenge.

    dcr: I’m waiting patiently for an anchovy blog post AND video. It really doesn’t count without the video proof.

    Oh, and you want to talk about prizes? Check out Lidian’s comment just above. THAT’S how you get a prize around here. No, I’m not fond of the “FIRST!” commenters. There doesn’t seem to be anything particularly commendable about that.

    Regan: That’s OK. I felt the same way when I was your age. And just look at me now! Eating expensive ice cream, cereal marshmallows, and sardines! You may change your mind too!

    kathryn: I’d like to think that Dave would remain professional and continue filming (and hold my hair), but he might’ve run out of the kitchen in disgust. Men are so weak. And yes, tuna is ALMOST as good as sardines, but it’s missing one of the “brain power” ingredients. No, tuna in a can looks fine, but maybe that’s because we’re all more used to it. Hmmm.

    Lola: Y’all are making me intrigued about these sardine-and-mustard sammiches. Wow! And tomato-y sardines over pasta? You are blowing my mind. I’m definitely going to try that. Thank you!

    dcr: Yeah, I don’t want sardines to become the next bacon. Ain’t no way I’m wearing a “SILF” T-shirt.

    jennyonthespot: YES YES YES! Now may I have one of those cookies?

    ann: I was expecting a different outcome too. I’m a little disappointed I didn’t even gag. I do recommend trying them at least. Definitely the ones in oil. On a buttered cracker. Your brain will thank you.

  32. 32 trade show displays guru

    hi JD,
    I haven’t had sardines since I was a kid! But your post convinced me that I should pick some up (with oil of course) the next time I’m at the store. And of course, I’ll pick up a six pack of Red Stripe to wash them down. :) ~ Steve, the trade show guru
    .-= trade show displays guru´s last blog ..Are Trade Shows Obsolete? =-.

  33. 33 absepa

    Oh, blerg. I hate fish, so my poor brain could definitely use some essential fishy oils. Sorry, brain! I’m afraid the mouth (and stomach) are going to continue to win out on this one. Maybe I could just get my fishy oils in one of those weird-looking squishy capsules.
    .-= absepa´s last blog ..So what is Eeyore, a werewolf? =-.

  34. 34 Your Daily Cute

    What am I going to do, you ask? Probably throw up a little in my mouth. You are a brave, brave woman — I wouldn’t have been able to get past what they LOOK like, let alone the smell.

    More power to you! Thank God this blog exists, so I don’t to eat sardines! :)
    .-= Your Daily Cute´s last blog ..Kitty Really Sticks It to the Stick! =-.

  35. 35 Shaky Jake

    I imagine (because I will never ACTUALLY try them) that they taste something like pickled herring? My grandpa used to keep jars of that stuff in his fridge and eat them religiously. They smelled like death wrapped inside of a stinky tourniquet.

    You’re too brave.
    .-= Shaky Jake´s last blog ..7 Dead in Local Pub, Cast of Cheers Covered in Vomit. =-.

  36. 36 Jen

    Even though you didn’t make a face I sure was. I have a few tins that belonged to my parents. I think they had them from the bomb shelter days. Dad always kept things to see if they really lasted forever, he didn’t but his sardines and lima beans did, and I have them. I don’t think I will try those however. I eat lutefisk so they can’t be that bad.
    .-= Jen´s last blog ..I’m Having a Sex Party =-.

  37. 37 dcr

    They also have Mediterranean style sardines. They in a sauce of olive oil, garlic, red peppers and black olives.

    I had to check out the sardine section at the grocery store tonight. ;)
    .-= dcr´s last blog ..A Long Time Ago, In the Refrigerated Section… =-.

  38. 38 Allie

    So when I was in kindergarten, a classmate of mine brought in peanut butter and sardine sandwiches almost every day for lunch… he loved them, but no one else in the room shared that sentiment.

    What I am wondering is would you be willing to try a sardine and peanut butter sandwich?

    And I must tell you that I love the concept behind this blog!

  39. 39 cardiogirl

    Alright, I was totally put off by the written post. God I was cringing as I watched the video.

    But damnation if I don’t sort of want to give it a try now that I saw you do it.

    I don’t know though.

    Who the hell am I trying to kid? Thanks for doing that so I don’t have to.
    .-= cardiogirl´s last blog ..The book of questions, Volume 63 =-.

  40. 40 JD

    trade show displays guru: Ah, I’m glad my simple tale of the sardine has encouraged you to seek out this oily inhabitant of the deep. And a cold Red Stripe sounds like the perfect accompaniment!

    absepa: Yes! Get the capsules! Altho some of them do give you the “fish-burps.” But you should definitely be getting some of that good fishy oil into your brain folds. I still can’t believe you hate fish. Even fish sticks???

    Your Daily Cute: HA! Aw. I’m happy I could do it. They did look pretty gross; I was just relieved not to see eyeballs or tails. Or bones. And the smell. Very strong. Luckily I do like fish, but even that was a bit much for me (but not for Gus and Pru).

    Shaky Jake: Well, I’ve never had pickled herring (and based on your description I never will), but I CAN tell you that these sardines did NOT taste like death wrapped inside a stinky tourniquet. I think your grandpa was the brave one.

    Jen: LUTEFISK???? And you’re afraid of a little ol’ sardine? Or is it the fact that it’s been sitting on a shelf for years? I’d ALMOST rather eat lutefisk than lima beans. They are my most reviled of all beans.

    dcr: You’re the sardine expert, aren’t you! Now I’m gonna have to check out some of these exotic sardines. I wouldn’t like the Mediterranean because of the peppers and olives. I wonder if they make them with my favorite pizza toppings: tomato, onion, green pepper, and pepperoni? Now THAT’s a sardine.

    Allie: Hello and welcome. YES! I will take your dare (was it actually a dare?) because I didn’t really feel like this sardine taste test was all that exciting. I’m already going to try peanut butter and bacon, so I’ll do a PB & sardine, too. Anyone else have any other PB combos?

    cardiogirl: I know how you feel. I felt the same way. Sardines fall into that category of not being TOTALLY gross . . . there’s enough possibility that they could be good that you wanna give ‘em a try. Well, it didn’t kill me, so I say go for it.

  41. 41 Stephanie Barr

    As I’m just getting over the flu, I’m going to just be grateful you ate them so I didn’t have to. I do like salty things, but oily, at this moment in time, doesn’t much appeal.
    .-= Stephanie Barr´s last blog ..For Avan: Will we move? =-.

  42. 42 erin

    I am not going to run out and buy a can of sardines but I AM a little less afraid of them after reading this/watching your video. I’m not known for my adventurous nature when it comes to food, but I MIGHT try these if they were given to me. I do like tuna (in water). This sounds like a case where my inability to smell things would come in quite handy.
    .-= erin´s last blog ..The House (a.k.a. The Money Pit) =-.

  43. 43 Scrooge

    You are nice to share with your cat.

    Sharing with cats AND DOGS is very important. I says.

    She likes pickled herrings but He and me do not so much. He won’t even go near them and won’t kiss She if She’s been eating them either.

    I will eat them but they do not taste SO good, really.
    .-= Scrooge´s last blog ..Turkeys and Beds =-.

  44. 44 Daniela

    wow. that video almost made me believe that sardines are’t NASTY! I just have a bad association with the sardine because I ran out of food while backpacking at one point…and had to eat sardines for 3 days straight…Hot, muggy, nasty sardines that we generally used as BAIT to trap mongoose.

    Nope…I won’t be eating sardines any time soon..unless they’re in a caesar salad.
    .-= Daniela´s last blog ..I’ve Got to Draw the Line Somewhere… =-.

  45. 45 Heather Kephart

    Julia, that is the pinnacle of awesomeness!!!!! LOL!!! I was laughing at Gus the whole time. And I’m glad you tasted those darn things because I’ve always wondered about them.

    It was great to see you. You are beautiful and you look so nice. :)
    .-= Heather Kephart´s last blog ..The fart that shook the earth =-.

  46. 46 lenox knits

    I don’t think I’ve ever tried sardines but now I am totally tempted to try. I have a recipe that I make often with anchovies though. They look similiar to the sardines in the tin with the oil. I mix them with tuna, a can of tomatoes with Italian seasoning and heat up on the burner, then pour over pasta. Sounds weird but so yummy, my husband always licks his plate.
    .-= lenox knits´s last blog ..Handmade Halloween =-.

  47. 47 Buggys

    JD, since you do so much for all of us I decided that tomorrow I will eat apple cake so you don’t have to. I know, no need to thank me.
    .-= Buggys´s last blog ..Aussie’s Have The P** Car-Where’s Mine? =-.

  48. 48 babs - beetle

    You just got my taste buds going. I want some now. Are you sure they are in water or is it Brine? Anyway, now let me tell you the best sardines. If you can get the ‘John West’ sardines in the US they are lovely. They come several ways but I prefer those that are in a tomato sauce (not ketchup) Oily and tomato flavour. Spread them on hot toast. They are delicious that way! The next shop will find us getting some John West sardines now :)
    .-= babs – beetle´s last blog ..For Sindie =-.

  49. 49 babs - beetle

    P.S. I am still holding you to the web cam – for Christmas ;)
    .-= babs – beetle´s last blog ..For Sindie =-.

  50. 50 Lin

    Oh, my grandpa would eat them right out of the can and make all the grandkids sick watching him. I don’t know why–maybe it was just the thought.

    Hmmm…so I’m thinking this can’t be bad because I LOVE sushi and sashimi and that’s sort of the same thing. (If they smell–don’t eat them!) I think I could try these too.

    Love the cats swarming and commenting. Two summers ago, we had a stray cat beating our two up and costing me a fortune in vet bills. We finally got a trap, baited it with cat food and got nothing for weeks. The neighbor gives me a can of sardines…..SCORE! We got that stupid cat that night. :)
    .-= Lin´s last blog ..I used to be tall =-.

  51. 51 nanodance

    I like sardines. When I was a kid we used to get the kind in tomato sauce. And now, thanks to you, I have a craving.

    Can you get swine flu, so I don’t have to?
    .-= nanodance´s last blog ..Sondra Stinglash Gets All Topical On Your Ass =-.

  52. 52 Roschelle

    I am so thankful that “you eat sardines so I don’t have to”. Most of my family members (mom, grandmom, aunts and uncles) love these little stinky fishy things. I just can’t wrap my mind around eating a little fishy….Sorry. But you did give me a great idea for my two kitties. I’ll bet they’ll love ‘em
    .-= Roschelle´s last blog ..Writing With Passion Leads to Success =-.

  53. 53 JD

    Stephanie Barr: Oh, I’m sorry you’ve been sick. You should probably avoid looking at, thinking about, or smelling sardines. Feel better.

    erin: Ah HA. An inability to smell things. Interesting. I wish I’d had that ability when I opened those tins. But if you can’t smell them, I do recommend trying one of our salty friends.

    Scrooge: I really had very little choice BUT to share. I’ve never tried pickled herring, but perhaps I will one of these days. I guess I won’t expect Dave to kiss me if I do.

    Daniela: Ew. That experience would put me off sardines. At least you had SOMEthing to eat, right? Even if it was bait.

    Heather Kephart: Oh, you’re so nice. Thank you. And Gus appreciates your laughter. He’s a bit of a ham. There was no way he was staying away from those sardines. So now you know: sardines are not that bad!

    lenox knits: I don’t know . . . that does sound a little weird, but what do I know? If it makes your husband lick his plate, how could it be that bad?

    Buggys: Wow. I will thank you for making this brave sacrifice on my behalf. I hope you’ll videotape it so we can all watch you choke it down.

    babs – beetle: OK, I’ll keep an eye out for that brand and type. Actually, it sounds pretty good, especially the toast part. Hmmm. (And yes, the webcam is still on my list!)

    Lin: Sardines! Beloved by grandpas and mean stray cats the world over! I love sushi too. I love most kinds of fish. And the smell wasn’t THAT bad; it was just very strong. Try them! I bet a certain orange stripey boy might be very interested . . .

    nanodance: Are you sure you want me to get swine flu? ‘Cuz I was going to dance naked in the middle of traffic so you don’t have to, but if I’m sick, I won’t be able to do it.

  54. 54 Will

    If they are packed in olive oil, Gus and I would be going at it to see who gets the little guys! I love them as much as I do garlic and would eat them every day if they did not do a similar thing to your breath that garlic does. Anyway, I do eat several tins a month, but just plan it when the rest of the family is not around. Even still, my kids have an amazing ability to detect the fact that a can has been recently opened. I can eat them in the summer with the windows open, wash the fork, put the tin in the trash and put the trash outside. When the first kid walks in the front door hours later, (the front door is 50 feet from the kitchen with the open windows where the sardines were eaten), as soon as they walk through the door they shout, “Oh no! Dad has been into the little fish again!”
    .-= Will´s last blog ..Our Food and Climate Change =-.

  55. 55 Franz

    I like sardines. I can eat them with tomato sauce, with bread, or simply alone. And the smell actually attracts me. And, no, I’m not a cat :P
    Guess it just depends on the person.


  56. 56 The Expatresse

    Friend of my parents used to make a delicious but ghastly looking dip with sardines and mustard. Looked like baby poo, but was great on saltines.

    Better is to eat fresh grilled sardines on the Costa del Sol.
    .-= The Expatresse´s last blog ..??????????? ???????? =-.

  57. 57 David

    I see that someone above me is called “The Random Yak.” I can assure you that, after seeing those sardine photos, my own yak was quite a bit less than random. I am very glad you did this so I don’t have to, because wow, I sure as hell don’t want to.
    .-= David´s last blog ..Random Items in No Particular Order =-.

  58. 58 JD

    Will: HA! Boy, that might help explain why our fridge STANK even after I’d tossed the two tin that I had carefully wrapped in tinfoil and saved for a few days. We literally had to take everything out to make sure there was nothing spoiled or dead, scrub it clean, and replace everything to get rid of the smell. I think Gus would like to challenge you to a sardine-eating contest. But I have to warn you: he is FAST!

    Franz: I think you must be at least PART cat to be attracted to the smell. But, yes, you’re right. It just depends on the person. Lots of different reactions to sardines just among the commenters here.

    Roschelle: Oh, yes! Your kitties will love you forever if you introduce them to the world of stinky sardines. I actually like the idea of little fishies—I think that’s what got me started on this whole thing.

    The Expatresse: Well, I don’t see myself getting to Costa del Sol any time soon, so what if I just grill them on my George Foreman? Not sure I could get past a baby-poo-looking dip. Were the sardines just chopped up? Hmmm.

    David: Heh. My mom told me that photo wasn’t loading for her, and I said she should be grateful. They may look awful, but trust me (would ol’ JD lie to you?), they really do taste just like tuna. I didn’t even come close to yakking.

  59. 59 Florida Girl In Sydney

    Ok, so then you ate the rest or gave the cat the meal of her life??
    .-= Florida Girl In Sydney´s last blog ..Festival of Dangerous Ideas =-.

  60. 60 The Expatresse

    I think the sardines were mashed with a fork. Interestingly, the guy who made them actually was a nuclear physicist. As in, “It DID take a rocket scientist to make this . . .”

    Alternatively, they were total slobs. Not only did the police once respond to an open door at their house and assume the place had been ransacked (it hadn’t . . . they were just messy), but once their kids made their own breakfast: cat chows and Tab. Not in the same bowl. I think. It was 30 years ago.
    .-= The Expatresse´s last blog ..??????????? ???????? =-.

  61. 61 sandraregina

    Now you made me hungry for sardines. I should open up the tin of mustard ones I have in my cupboard, and chow down. Or moosh them (that’s the technical term) on rye bread. Mmmm.

    The cats can have some of the sardines packed in oil, but the mustard ones are ALL MINE.

  62. 62 Theresa

    Does this bring back memories! My father used to crack open a can and slurp those sardines right down. When he showed them to me, I swear, the heads were still there. Seeing those fish eyes staring back at me did the trick. I think Dad liked them so he made sure the kids were scared away so we wouldn’t eat them up on him.

    Besides, you can buy all those nutritionals in pill form! Those I can take. (Hope no one decides to start painting fish eyes on those pills!)
    .-= Theresa´s last blog ..Social Networking’s Next Level? I Think I’ll Pass =-.

  63. 63 Staci at Just Bloggled

    You should have remembered that cardinal rule from childhood. If it’s good for you, it’s going to taste bad. If it’s really good for you, it’s going to taste even worse.

    Dr. Oz actually had a segment last week on his talk show about how great sardines are for you. The whole time I was thinking that, even if I wasn’t allergic to fish, I’d rather get brittle bones and have my hair fall out than eat those things on a regular basis. Yuck. Thank God for vitamins and supplements.
    .-= Staci at Just Bloggled´s last blog ..From the Dentist’s Chair to the Painted Chair =-.

  64. 64 JD

    Florida Girl In Sydney: Oh, man, the cats would’ve probably thrown up for 5 hours if they’d gotten to eat both of those tins. Here’s what I did (after the camera turned off). Ate another few bites on a cracker, wrapped the tins in tin foil, put in fridge for 3 days, then threw them out. They were good, but not that good. Sorry, cats.

    The Expatresse: Wow. This was a very interesting-sounding family. I’ve heard the really smart ones can be quite eccentric. Which explains the cat chows and Tab. I almost want to try that smashed sardine/mustard dip. If a physicist made it, how bad can it be?

    sandraregina: Ahhh. See comment above. There’s this whole smashing/mooshing thing that I totally missed out on. But they’re already so slimy and oily . . . it seemed safest to just take a bite without disturbing them too much. And now REALLY curious about the fact that people like them mixed with mustard and with tomato sauce (tho not together, I’m assuming).

    Theresa: HA! I take the fish pills too. Some of them give me fishy burps, which is not too pleasant. But I like to eat fish. Not fish eyes, tho.

    Staci at Just Bloggled: I agree! I take a lot of vitamins because my diet is pretty crappy. But if you like tuna, you’d probably like sardines. I’m not trying to sell anything here, but they really aren’t bad. Tho . . . I did throw mine out after a few days.

  65. 65 Pricilla

    I don’t know how I missed this tantalizing post. The male person likes sardines. The Farm cats like sardines. This goat does not.

    I think it’s the “animal-ness”

    You really will DO ANYTHING, won’t you?

    Do you want to come clean out my goat pen?
    .-= Pricilla´s last blog ..Goatucation – Back To Basics, The Toggenburg Goat =-.

  66. 66 natural

    heck no, i will not eat sardines. ever! forget the bomb scare, we have a sardine scare over here.

    i think i can smell them through the monitor. going to throw up now.
    .-= natural´s last blog ..The Psychology of Hair =-.

  67. 67 dcr

    What do you mean you threw them out? They’re little tins. You can finish off a tin in one sitting. Sometimes, you might be hungry enough to finish off the second one.

    But sardines sitting around, uneaten, in a fridge, for three days? Say it ain’t so! You know that’s brain food, don’t you? You better watch out because when our zombie overlords take over, that’s all they’ll let us eat. Sardines’ll make our brains big and strong, and you know what zombies like to eat, right?

    The sardine industry will thrive in the Age of the Zombie Apocalypse!
    .-= dcr´s last blog ..Silly Rabbit, Tricks are for Spammers =-.

  68. 68 Maureen

    One word: Ick.

    Okay, I have to type more than one word. However, typing “one word” is actually more than one word.

    But that word is still ICK.
    .-= Maureen´s last blog ..Wordless Wednesday – Monstrous Owie =-.

  69. 69 JD

    Pricilla: I really will do MOST things. Um, cleaning out your goat pen sounds very difficult and like something I’d need special training for. I wouldn’t want to do it wrong.

    natural: So did you throw up? I’m curious. The only time a smell ever made me feel close to throwing up was our refrigerator after we were away for a few weeks and had accidentally turned it off. There was chicken in there. I’ll say no more.

    dcr: HA! I love the way you tie in sardines with the Zombie Apocalypse. It makes perfect sense. I don’t know. Those sardines really stank up the joint. Our fridge still smells, and that was over a week ago. I liked them . . . well enough . . . but not enough to polish them off in one sitting. I’ll just wait for the Zombie Apocalypse. I guess there will be plenty of sardines then.

    Maureen: Your “ICK” is sufficient. It does kind of say it all. But really, they were rather tasty. I’m not running out and buying 100 tins, but for this particular experiment . . . well, I didn’t gag.

  70. 70 Ernie

    I used to eat sardines when I was a kid. As I recall, my mom would mix them with some salt, pepper and just a bit of vinegar and then spread them on toast. I quite liked them. A few years ago I discovered the joy of kippers. Especially the hot sauce flavoured variety spread on a toasted bagel. Thems good eats. It’s funny though how people always say things like, “We’re already packed in like sardines, but we’re stopping to pick up more”. Why don’t we say, “packed in like sous-vide cow cheeks”?
    .-= Ernie´s last blog ..Hey Good Lookin’, What Ya Got Cookin’? =-.

  71. 71 Peter K

    Back in HK tinned Sardines are a GODSEND especially during typhoon season. One tin + instant noodles = nourishment for the season lol.

  72. 72 JD

    Ernie: HA! I really hope “sous-vide cow cheeks” will catch on. It does have a nice ring to it. I’m pretty sure I ate kippers when I lived in Ireland, tho I don’t think we had the hot sauce kind. But that does sound good. How would you say kippers differ from sardines? (or from cow cheeks, for that matter?)

    Peter: Mmm. Noodles. That does sound pretty good. Kind of look tuna casserole but without the peas.

  73. 73 GE

    I’ve loved sardines since childhood, except now I eat the water kind instead of the oil kind. I like a sardine and red-onion sandwich on rye bread. I used to work in a print shop and my co-workers forbade me to eat sardines on the premises.

  74. 74 JD

    GE: Mmmm. Except for the rye bread, that sounds delish. Your co-workers were being unreasonable.

  75. 75 Funny hype

    You have a beautiful cat but my cat is the best :D and I love all of them.
    .-= Funny hype´s last blog ..Gym advertisement =-.

  76. 76 Jonny Hamachi

    Welcome to the Society.

    Great Vid.
    .-= Jonny Hamachi´s last blog ..Avocado is Nature’s Mayonnaise =-.

  77. 77 cdsgf

    Me and my cats both enjoy them. My cats are indoors so I buy the ones soaked in hot sauce (and when I feel like spending money will make me feel happier wine)

    that way mr. kitty doesn’t touch em. mr. kitty can enjoy the heads of the bargain bin cans I occasionally buy of the ghetto sardine brands.

    or he can do his f’in job and kill everything smaller than him. lazy loveable fluff ball.

  78. 78 JD

    Funny hype: I don’t even know what that means. But . . . YOU ARE WRONG!

    Jonny Hamachi: Thank you? I am scared.

    cdsgf: I thought I might try the hot sauce ones. I like hot sauce. But it seemed a risky combo. My cats will eat literally anything. And they will often help themselves by taking it right out of my hand, like a bird.

  79. 79 Mr. Che

    Just tried sardines for the first time, not bad at all! I tried the Alton Brown recipe and mixed a can of sardines(packed in water) with 1/2 of an avocado, juice of 1/2 a lemon and a few drops of hot sauce. I had it on a toasted onion roll. Delicious. Gotta try it!

  80. 80 JD

    Mr. Che: That does sound pretty damn good — and healthy too! Thanks for sharing. Alton Brown is one of my heroes.

  81. 81 Angie

    I grew up on sardines and I absolutely love them! They makes them better thqan they did when I was a kid. King Oscar has them mediterrenean style with black olives and they are so good. Not to mention they have more calcium than a glass of milk.

  1. 1 The Random Yak
  2. 2 I Did A Cleanse So You Don’t Have To | Jenny On the Spot: Caffeinated mom, lover of dancing, glitter and glitter.


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